Photo credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
NASA’s six-wheeled Perseverance successfully converted some of the Red Planet’s thin, carbon dioxide-rich atmosphere into pure oxygen. This toaster-sized instrument, called the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment (MOXIE), completed the task on April 20, the 60th Martian day since it landed on Feb. 18. The goal is to eventually isolate and store oxygen on Mars to help power rockets that could lift astronauts off the planet’s surface. Read more for a video about the device and additional information.
Put simply, ferrofluid is essentially a liquid that is attracted to the poles of a magnet that are made of magnetic particles suspended in a carrier fluid. Artist Dakd Jung decided to create a speaker that uses this liquid to visualize music, but for this to be possible, the glass container first had to be treated to prevent the particles from sticking. Next, the custom 3D-printed housing had to be sanded and wired to an electromagnetic device. Read more for a video of the project.
Researchers at the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias in the Canary Islands has discovered a super-Earth that orbits red dwarf star GJ 740 in just 2.4 days. For comparison, Earth takes 365 days to revolve around the sun, this exoplanet does so in less than a week, or two days, nine hours, and thirty minutes to be exact. The TESS satellite will continue to observe this super-Earth and could provide more information on the planet in the future. Read more for a video and additional information.
Scientists believe that more Tyrannosaurus rex existed during the Cretaceous Period landscape than once thought. That’s right, they claim that up to 2.5 billion of them roamed the Earth during their estimated 2.4 million years and 127,000 generations inhabiting the western North America region. Many factors were considered, including geographic range, body mass, growth pattern, life expectancy, duration of a single generation and the total time this dinosaur existed before extinction 66 million years ago. Read more for two videos and additional information.
NASA has just released a video that visualizes a pair of orbiting supermassive black holes that trace how they distort and redirect light emanating from the maelstrom of hot gas – called an accretion disk – that surrounds each one. When viewed from near the orbital plane, each accretion disk has a double-humped look, but as they pass in front of one another, the gravity of the foreground black hole transforms its partner into a rapidly changing sequence of arcs. Read more for the video and additional information.
Photo credit: Purdue University / Jared Pike
Purdue University researchers have created the whitest paint yet, and one practical use would be to use it on buildings to help them cool them off enough to reduce the need for air conditioning. This is a followup to the ultra-white paint they unveiled last October, but builds upon it by keeping surfaces cooler than the formulation that the researchers had previously demonstrated. Think of this as the opposite of “Vantablack,” the blackest black material which absorbs up to 99.9% of visible light. Read more for a video and additional information.
Photo credit: Purdue University / Jared Pike
Engineers from Purdue University, Air Squared Inc., and Whirlpool Corporation are currently building a refrigerator that can operate in zero gravity regardless of orientation and just as well as the one found in your home. Next month, these engineers will test their innovative fridge design on Zero Gravity Corporation’s (ZERO-G) unique weightless research lab, which flies in microgravity for 20-second intervals. Read more for a video and additional information.
NASA has just announced that it has selected JPL’s Lunar Crater Radio Telescope advanced concept for further research and development. This ultra-long-wavelength radio telescope on the far-side of the Moon has several advantages compared to Earth-based and Earth-orbiting telescopes, including being able to observe the universe at wavelengths greater than 10m (i.e., frequencies below 30MHz) and having the Moon act as a physical shield that isolates the lunar-surface telescope from radio interferences/noises from Earth-based sources. Read more for two videos and additional information.
Have you come across a photo of Mars with spider-like objects? Well, these are not the creepy crawlies you find around your home, but are caused by a phenomenon known as sublimation. That’s right, planetary scientists recreated a machine capable of simulating the Martian atmosphere and discovered that once solid ice came in contact with the warmer sediment of the surface, some of it instantly changed from a solid into gas, resulting in spider-like cracks. Read more for a video and additional information.
Photo credit: Future Timeline
Scientists at Brown University in Rhode Island have created the first wireless brain-computer interface capable of transmitting signals with ‘single-neuron resolution and in full broadband fidelity.’ The BrainGate technology consists of a small transmitter that connects to a person’s brain motor cortex. Participants with paralysis used the system to control a tablet computer and achieved similar typing speeds and point-and-click accuracy as they could with wired systems. Read more for videos on brain-computer interfaces and additional information.